Inside: How to raise kind respectful children and be a happy mom. If you wish for your child to respect your personal space and the rights of others, teach them by practicing these 7 things yourself.
When I was newly married, we frequently hung around with my husband’s friends. They had young families with 2-3 kids. I was a young wife.
I liked to show off my new crochet shawls and crafts to my friends, but they’d always say: ‘ Enjoy it while you can because once the children come, you’ll have to put all of this aside.’
Whenever hubby and I went on quick day trips, they’d say, ‘…not when the kids come around.’
I’ll be honest. I felt offended when they said that. Because growing up, I saw my parents to be very different. They went out with friends, they traveled by themselves … in fact, my mother had so many hobbies and even a business, while raising five children.
I never saw her hiding her craft supplies and sighing away that we were bothering her!
Happy Mothers Raise Happy Children.
When I had four children in six years, life got really busy. I confess: there did came a time when I started to wonder if all those people were actually right.
I wondered how my mother found time for herself while bringing up 5 children. Even more, I wonder how my mother in law could raise 9 children?! What was their secret?
I started studying people around me who had more kids than me. I talked to my best friends who had 4 or more children. Slowly, story by story, I began to relax and take out time for myself.
I became a happy mother. And the more I did things for myself, the happier I was.
Don’t get me wrong. I was still stressed and super busy, but that’s when I understood that kids really DON’T take up all of our time!
We are the ones who put ourselves in the box. It’s OUR perspective!
I admit when the children are little, things are a little busy but it is our job to teach children to value our personal space. It is our job to raise kind and respectful children but we can only do that when we are kind and respectful to our own self.
We have to teach our children how to treat us because if do not, how will they learn on their own?
Mommy is a person.
If we don’t show our children the right way to be kind to parents, they will show love the way they know to love. That may be why they only write ‘I Love You’ cards all the time.
It is our job (as mothers) to teach our children how people live and are loved.
So, I changed my perspective on life and kids. I started to relax around my children.
My children are my love. I understood that they need me, but they don’t need me to sacrifice my life and be unhappy.
If I want my children to grow up to be kind and respectful adults; if I want my children to respect women and understand how much we do for our families, we need to show by example.
7 Ways Happy Moms Raise Respectful and Kind Children
You don’t have to give up your life just because you are a mom now. You can love the things you enjoyed before marriage and kids and STILL love your family.
Sometimes, while trying hard to be a good mom, we often forget that we need to put on our oxygen mask first if we intend to save others.
The way we behave around our children teaches them how to treat not just us but also in future how they will treat the people around them.
So, if you want respectful children; if you want your children to be kind, empathetic and caring, teach them how to love you. They will take that image of you in their mind forever.
I’m sharing today 7 ways I teach my children to value my personal space. I hope you can see how easy it is to love our children and ourselves at the same time.
1. Happy moms aren’t afraid to talk about their feelings and emotions.
It’s okay to have cheerful days, crazy days, busy days, sad days, bad days and angry days. Show your children what happy means. Show them what upset looks like.
They’re learning by watching you. Model good behavior of course, but don’t be afraid to show your emotions. Remember that you can be angry and still be decent.
Be human. We all have bad days. Show your vulnerability, but remember to mind your words and actions. Don’t be harsh or cruel with your words.
You want to show them how to voice their displeasure. Don’t model bad behavior. Use words to talk about how you feel. Let the children learn from you how to talk about their own issues. Open the dialogue on feelings.
When you show: Your anger, sadness, joy, boredom.
Children learn: Language, vocabulary, relationships, boundaries; they learn emotions, sympathy, empathy, good manners; healthy ways to vent and express joy and so much more.
2. Happy moms do things for themselves too.
Read a book, craft, draw, spend time putting on makeup just because… have a personality and show it.
Show your children what their mother enjoys. Teach children about self love. If someone asks them what mommy likes to do, they should be able to answer them.
When you: take out time to do the things you enjoy doing.
Children learn: How adults keep themselves busy, what are the things in life worth enjoying and healthy ways to spend time. They learn patience seeing someone is busy. They see skills and talents and want learn for themselves. They’ll learn that there is more to life than just screen time!
3. Happy moms prioritize their marriage.
Once in a while, leave the kids with someone and go out with your husband. I know that sounds silly to remind like that but really, when we have little children, sometimes we forget that we can do that. Children understand that parents do things without them too.
Don’t feel guilty about doing things without your children. Many young parents feel that they will put their child through ’emotional’ trauma if they do so.
NO. Relax! Your children will be okay. They may actually benefit by being with someone else.
When they get a little older, they learn to understand that parents need each other and they need that alone time to be happy.
Also, get in the habit of reminding them to knock on the door if mommy and daddy have the door closed. It’s general good manners and it’s even mentioned in the Quran.
What kids learn: When you prioritize your relationship with their father, they learn to respect your boundaries. They are watching you and learning about love and companionship.
4. Happy moms go out with their friends and talk on the phone.
I know how children are 100% more annoying when we pick up the phone but it is necessary for our own mental health.
When you go out with your girls, children learn that mom spends time with other people too. You don’t necessarily have to leave them at home. By all means, take them with you; but it’s okay if you can go without them too.
Children need examples of what healthy friendships look like. You, on the other hand, need that time to unwind and get some adult interaction. It will make you happy. You will feel renewed and revived.
So don’t shy away that you have children and make excuses that you cannot find time. Just GO! It will take a few tries before you learn how to just get out of the house.
A lesson I learnt the hard way is that sometimes, we need a new set of friends for a new season of life. You don’t have to chuck your old friends, of course. Just add a few new people to your crowd. It is like getting a new set of tools.
When your children see you out and about enjoying with your girls, they see a happy mom. They learn to make friendships and how to honor them too.
5. Happy moms have their own stuff too.
Your separate craft supplies or just a pack of sharpies… your favorite mug that the kids know for sure that mom doesn’t like anyone using it…
May be you have a favorite shawl that you hate sharing… It’s okay. You are a person. You don’t have to share your things with your children just because you gave birth to them.
It doesn’t make you less of a mother to not want to share. In fact, you’re teaching children to value their own stuff. They will watch you and want to have their own stuff. They will observe how you take care of your things and protect them. They will do the same.
6. Happy moms don’t do everything for their children.
Yes, your children are your responsibility, but that doesn’t mean you’re their sworn in slave for life.
Sorry for the harsh words, but that’s exactly how I felt when I had a baby and a toddler and my 8 year old wouldn’t bring me his plate in the kitchen because that was mom’s job.
The way we parent our children becomes their habit of how they will treat the people in their lives in future. Don’t grow entitled children, give your children responsibility and chores from the start.
Chores are responsibilities that when you are all living together everyone should share. I talk a lot about routines here on my blog. You can see that all my routines have chores woven into the daily rhythm. Children don’t even realize they are doing chores but it builds their self confidence and helps avoid the power struggles.
7. Happy Moms visit their parents and call them often.
The best way to show your children how to love their parents is by being loving to your own parents.
Children watch the way you behave with your own mom and dad. Let them hear you say that they’re your parents and that you love and respect them.
Let them see you be involved in their affairs – worried, happy, involved, caring, praying. Teach your child the prayers and verses for praying on their parents. Let them hear you make Dua for them.
8. BONUS: Happy moms have a set bedtime for kids!
We have an early bedtime in our home and it’s made me a much happier mom, and definitely made all the difference in the world in our marriage.
My husband and I have a few hours each day to invest in eachother and our relationship. So important to us!
We also do routines in our home, and for us, it’s made things like bedtime, naptime, and meal time all the more enjoyable. You can see my children’s toddler routine, school time routine and summer routines if you need examples.
I want my children to learn that people will love them just the way they are.
We teach people to treat us by the way we treat ourselves. If we don’t care for our happiness, it is hard for others to know what really makes us happy.
Kindness, empathy, love, respect – these are things that we learn from observing others more than from being taught. We learn how to treat others by feeling for them. Teach your children feelings. Be a happy person.
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